Winnie Rugamba was born in Swaziland, grew up in Rwanda, with her father, mother, brother and sister. As a young Rwandan girl, Winnie was blessed to be born in a family that values education, therefore they sacrificed as much as they could for her to attend one of the best elementary and high school schools in Rwanda. Growing up Rugamba realized her interests circulated around the arts; reading books, poetry, music and acting. During Winnie’s three years of high school she was introduced to debate, and became passionate about it. In her last year, Rugamba’s managed to win third place in the East African Debate Championship, and placed as the 15th best speaker out more than 100 competitors. Debate wasn’t very popular in Rwanda, but Rugamba had an excellent coach that was determined to take them as far as they could go. Through the debate organization, iDebate Rwanda, Winnie’s research skills, speaking skills, and confidence grew . Debate became very important to Rugamba, which opened an opportunity for her to become part of the Great Debaters where she qualified for the American Forensics Association and National Forensics Association National Championships in her first semester.